Major General Chris Donahue, commander of the 82nd Airborne Division of the United States Army, has become the latest American soldier to leave Afghanistan.
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The Pentagon has published on its Twitter account a photograph of the soldier shortly before boarding a C-17, the military plane that took off from the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul this Monday at 3:29 p.m. on the east coast of the United States ( 19.29 GMT) and with which the United States ended the longest war in its history. In the image you can see Donahue – who has been part of more than 17 operations in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria, among other countries, as collected by Usa Today– holding his gun with the Kabul airport hangar in the background.
The 82nd Airborne Division is based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and is part of the Army’s XVIII Airborne Corps. From this body they have affirmed, after the end of the evacuation, that it has been an “incredibly tough” mission, subjected to a lot of pressure and with “active” threats at all times: “Our troops showed courage, discipline and empathy.”
This parachute division, according to its website, has fought in the First and Second World Wars, as well as the Gulf War (1990-1991). He was also during the US invasion of Panama (from December 20, 1989 to January 3, 1990) and in the war in Iraq (2003-2011), among others.
On Monday, the head of the US Central Command, General Frank McKenzie, announced the completion of the withdrawal from Afghanistan and the end of the mission to evacuate US citizens, third-country nationals and vulnerable Afghans. During a press conference from the Pentagon, in which he intervened telematically, McKenzie explained that the acting US ambassador, Ross Wilson, was also traveling in the last US military plane.
In addition, he confirmed that since August 14, a day before the Taliban took Kabul, more than 79,000 civilians have been evacuated on US military flights from Hamid Karzai International Airport, including 6,000 Americans. Together with the international coalition flights, the figure rises to more than 123,000 evacuated civilians.